It’s no wonder that nothing is growing much – some leaves of the french beans, which are in the greenhouse about 5 feet away from the side panes of glass, are scorched by last night’s frost. The aubergines are looking unhappy and so are some of the tomatoes. The pepper and chilli plants are holding up well, as are the greenhouse cucumbers, although they have hardly grown since I planted them out. The courgette plants are looking good and have almost outgrown the frost damage of a few weeks ago. All these things are in the big Dutch light greenhouse of course – nothing tender is planted out at all. I’m doubting now that they will be before I go away, which is a bit disappointing, but I think it’s too risky unless the forecast is really much better by the weekend.
Dilly phoned this morning, asking me to go through and help to calm down Pugsley, who had got himself into a real state. There was a hanger on a door which had stopped it from shutting (I’m not sure exactly about the details) and he had convinced himself that there was a monster or something in the house which was out to get him – he was genuinely terrified. We were puzzled and a bit unnerved – he asked to come to my house as he was afraid of his. He was having sandwiches for lunch before going to nursery, so he brought them and I sat him on my lap while he ate them and I did some careful explaining of what’s real and what’s not, and that there are stories and films that are just stories – he did listen sensibly and we talked it all though, and then discussed things that really are dangerous in the wrong places, such as fire and cars. And then animals that are real, like lions, but are not exactly a threat to him, and snakes. I said I’d look out the snake skin I found in the greenhouse, but luckily he didn’t think of it when he came home, because I couldn’t remember where I’ve put it – it’s not where I thought it was.
Anyway, when he came home he said that he was all right and it had all been a game – it hadn’t at the time, but he seems to have got over it and he didn’t mind at all about going home again.
When sitting on my lap, every time he wanted to say something, he started with “Excuse me,” which was sweet – I suppose he’s picked that up at nursery school.
Zerlina has had two days at the childminders now and it’s gone very well. The first day, last Friday, apparently, she cried for nearly an hour and was very relieved when Weeza went to pick her up, but the Monday afterwards, although she cried when Weeza left, she stopped almost at once and was quite relaxed upon Weeza’s return. She was asleep when her mother left her with me yesterday and took a while to placate when she woke – though I think that was because she was hungry – anyway, when Squiffany arrived she cheered right up. When Weeza got back she was pleased, but almost immediately left with Dilly to go to their house – we followed a few minutes later, and by then she was happily bouncing on the trampoline and laughing with Squiffany and Pugsley. So that seems to be all right. No separation anxiety there, unless it’s on Weeza’s part.